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Anger grows over rescue efforts in Cairo

CAIRO, Egypt: Hopes diminished yesterday for finding survivors among hundreds of people believed trapped beneath massive boulders that destroyed an impoverished neighborhood on Cairo's outskirts, killing at least 32 people, including whole extended families. Anger and resentment mounted as authorities failed for a second day to get heavy machinery into the devastated shantytown to try to clear the large slabs that split away from the Muqattam cliffs early Saturday. Survivors among the 100,000 residents of the Dewika slum were also left to spend the night without shelter.

Police seek to indict Olmert in corruption

JERUSALEM: Israel's police recommended yesterday that Prime Minister Ehud Olmert be indicted in a string of corruption cases, according to an official document. The police statement said they want to indict Olmert in affairs that include receiving tens of thousands of dollars from a U.S. businessman and double-billing Jewish groups for trips abroad. The decision about whether to indict Olmert rests with the attorney general. The charges include receiving bribes, breach of public trust and money laundering.

Prime minister sets early election in Canada

OTTAWA: Prime Minister Stephen Harper propelled Canada into a federal election campaign yesterday. The vote Oct. 14 will come about a year earlier than the date Harper had specified in legislation after his Conservative Party assumed power in January 2006. It will be the third national election for Canada in slightly more than four years. Harper said opposition parties had forced his hand by rendering Parliament "dysfunctional." But his opponents retorted that the early vote was exactly the sort of political manipulation the prime minister had promised to eliminate. Harper's government, like the Liberal one it succeeded, did not control a majority in Parliament. While he held power despite that handicap for a relatively long period, Harper is chancing an election now to exploit the Conservatives' current strengths - chiefly, his own popularity - and to face the voters before the negatives, mainly the economy, get worse.

Study: Colon cancer screenings lacking

NEW YORK: Many colon cancer patients aren't getting the screenings recommended after surgery to make sure the disease hasn't returned, new research shows. Only about 40 percent of the 4,426 older patients in the study got all the doctor visits, blood tests and the colonoscopy advised in the three years after cancer surgery, according to the results released today in the journal Cancer. While nearly all made the doctor visits and almost three-quarters got a colonoscopy, many didn't get the blood tests that can signal a return of colon cancer, according to the researchers at University Hospitals Case Medical Center in Cleveland. Whether doctors didn't offer the tests or patients failed to get them isn't known, said Dr. Gregory Cooper, who led the study.

U.N. may cut food aid in Darfur over attacks

ROME: A U.N. agency is threatening to suspend food distribution in Sudan's troubled Darfur region because of relentless attacks on its aid convoys. The World Food Program says bandits are hijacking the convoys and making it increasingly difficult to reach 3 million people in the area. The Rome-based agency said in a statement yesterday that more than 100 vehicles carrying WFP aid have been hijacked this year. It says many have been shot at and robbed, while 69 trucks and 43 drivers remain unaccounted for. The agency's deputy representative in Sudan, Monika Midel, says operations in some areas will be suspended if attacks continue.

Russian Navy to join Venezuela in exercises

BOGOTA, Colombia: The Venezuelan government confirmed yesterday that four Russian naval vessels will participate in joint exercises in the Caribbean this year, a move that could heighten already strained relations between Russia and the U.S. The announcement came shortly after Russian Prime Minister Vladimir V. Putin warned that the South American Defense Council's deployment of several warships to the Black Sea in the aftermath of Russia's invasion of Georgia last month would not go unanswered.

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